Friday, February 20, 2009

The Lemonade Quilt

For those old enough to remember the late '60s and early '70s, the time spawned various slogans. My favorite was and is "Give a damn." Others will remember "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade." About then I had a bag from a fabric store that said, "When life gives you scraps, make a quilt." This quilt will be called The Lemonade Quilt because it's been a tart couple of weeks and I could use some sugar. No, real sugar on hand so I turned on the creativity tap and have been immersed in piecing this quilt from the shirting pieces mentioned in the last post.

This was pure, spontaneous piecing, the sort, I think, the women of Gees Bend did when they had a bag of scraps. I had no pattern, but wanted to make squarea of various sizes. I wasn't sure how the various sizes were going to fit together but I had an ah-ha moment: they didn't have to exactly fit I could fill in with pieces of the striped fabric. Which I did here and there. Several truisms arose as I worked. One is, every idea is subject to change. Above was a layout partially sewn on my Design Purple Fleece Throw [replacing the nonexistent design wall some quilters enjoy having in their more spacious abodes].

Another truism of spontaneously made quilts of multi-size squares is: you'll need more than you think. If you're making a traditional quilt of single size squares some simple multiplication will give you the number you need. Not so here. Of course, yet another truism is: it will take more fabric than you thought. It did but I had sufficient. I even have two pieces left which are not the strict stripes that will make the backing. And all this for $10.00! Below is a partial picture of the finished top.

And below here is a detail from the center of the quilt. Obviously I still need to add batting and the backing and then quilt it. That will make a big difference. And I'm fairly certain there will be many shirting buttons added as well. So the amount of time needed for completion stretches out ahead of me.

The creativity tap has run dry for the time being, run dry. I have a couple of quilts that need finishing touches. The reversible one a couple posts back only needs tiny touches. The show quilt is only half quilted so will take at least a whole afternoon and then the binding, hanging sleeve and label have to be added. Meanwhile there's a bird's nest of bits of thread all around my sewing area that I have to clean up and some general straightening is in orer. I have a satisfying feeling of getting something accomplished.

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